Gary Caldwell has warned Wigan Athletic to beware the one that got away when Peterborough visit the DW Stadium this weekend.
Included in the Posh ranks will be Shaq Coulthirst, the 21-year-old striker who joined the club from Tottenham in January.
Coulthirst spent two loan spells with Latics at the start of this season, although injury prevented him making more than two cameos off the bench.
Nevertheless, Caldwell admits Latics were keen to pursue a full-time deal when Spurs decided to offload him, only for the youngster to plump instead for Posh.
“He was obviously somebody we had, and I saw him as a very good young player,” Caldwell revealed.
“He did excellent while he was here before suffering a bad injury, but he showed a great work ethic to get back fit just before the end of his loan.
“I think he has a bright future in the game, and I think he would have done well here.
“As I said to him, it’s his decision and he chose where he wanted to go and play football.
“He chose Peterborough and good luck to him. We can’t dwell on that.
“This club has always looked forward and we’ll continue to do that.”
Caldwell also rejected the idea that Coulthirst may have a ‘point to prove’ on his return to the DW Stadium.
“I don’t think he’ll have a point to prove, because he knows we think he’s a good player,” the Wigan boss said.
“We’ll have a point to prove if anything, to try and stop him!
“The players will know him we’ll from training against him, and they’ll know that he’s a big threat.”
Latics are aiming to extend their unbeaten run to 14 matches, having impressed their boss with the way they dug in for a point at Millwall in midweek following the first-half dismissal of Sam Morsy.
“On our day, we’re an extremely good team to watch, and play some excellent, attacking football,” Caldwell added. “But on Tuesday the lads showed a steel that we didn’t have at the start of the season, if I’m being honest.
“The players have developed that from working with each other, and understanding each other and the demands of this club.
“I’ve told the players that I saw everything I wanted to see from a team that’s ready to challenge and be successful.
“If ever there was a crisis in a game, it was at half-time.
“The response from the 10 men showed we have the spirit to get where we want to be.”